December 30, 2008

What Are You Doing For New Year's Eve?

In about less than a day, we will welcome 2009. 

In a way, we all look forward to the new year as it represents a clean slate to start the new year. Looking back on 2008, it had been both good and bad. 

Besides looking at the year retrospectively, we also look to what we can achieve in 2009. So, not sure if everyone dreads making resolutions but after much thought, its not so much of resolutions alone but it's a combination of both resolutions and goals to achieve.'s definition of resolution is "the act of resolving or determining upon an action or course of action, method, procedure, etc." Hence, to put forth a resolution is the very act of taking action towards achieving a set goal.

In the last few days of 2008, I will be putting some thoughts down for my goals in 2009. Most likely I'll still be continuing some goals from 2008 though, kekekeke...

Meanwhile, what else will you be doing on New Year's Eve... aside from the mandatory eating and drinking activities?

December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!!


Before I forget, here's wishing everyone a very Blessed and Merry Christmas!! May God keep you and your family close during this season of blessings.

Remember to stay safe and not drink and drive!

Also... Happy New Year!! Hope that 2009 will be better than what was forecast.

December 20, 2008

Women In Technology - Why So Few?

I'm going to cheat here.... As it's a Saturday and some of my pics are not ready yet. :)

Found an old post in my other "defunk" blog... This was written on 24th May 2007 after reading a very interesting post by Amy Fowler. It's a long one... So, get some coffee first!

Wow.. I have chosen BIG words for this post. Not that the words are HUGE or difficult, but the topic that this post is about is more or less something I have been wanting to write for a long while now.

Anyway, this post by Amy Fowler, at has stirred something in me to point out the misconceptions that certain quarters have about the topic I posed on this entry today. This is not a male-bashing post about how they treat women in certain industries or how certain industries are suitable for women only. No, this is clearly about women in technology; about why there are so few of us females in technology-based industries.

It is fortunate or unfortunate to say that there are not many women in IT these days. For one, especially in Malaysia or some parts of Asia, IT is still seen to be a man’s/geek’s world. If you go out to any convention, how many women do you see in the audience? How many women do you see asking technical questions or engage in some interesting technical debate? Perhaps it is our Asian culture at play here, but most Asian women tend to be a bit submissive or soft-spoken. However, when given the chance, some of these women display a technical prowess which can put some male techies to shame. The problem is that they do not know how to find a voice or stage to showcase their talents.

I do recall while at university that as I advanced from one year to the next, I noticed that the number of females around me seem to disappear by 50% or even 70% at times! This was a shock for me, but since I came from a class at high school which had 75% males, I thought to myself that this is a situation I had to get used to.

The same situation occurred when I entered the working force. I started work at a medium-sized IT Systems Integration/Consulting company and found that I was one of three ladies who were in the technical department. The rest were male, of course. Most of our internal applications had forms prep-filled with the gender marked “Male” because the number of males > females. Go figure…

Anyway, my CTO did not have much faith in females as he found them to be a distraction for his staff. However, I was blessed to have very capable female seniors who advised me on how to handle the guys. You may have to work twice as hard as the guys in order to gain recognition, or else, they will just brush you aside. The key thing was to tell them off politely or “roughly” when they ask you to do silly things like asking you about how a form looked based on some colour schemes. Some guys were afraid that we could not do anything at all and were afraid to give out any difficult work. So, we had to fight our way to get challenging tasks our way and when called for, rise to the occasion. Once we proved to the guys that we could do the task at hand, they began to look at us for our abilities rather than at our gender.

At times, the guys accepted us as being one of the guys, so much so that at one point, we were asked to do some heavy lifting. Of course, we did not carry the heaviest things but we did our share of moving the odd CPU (which weighed a few kilograms those days) from site A to B. Anyway, the best part of that working environment was that there was mutual respect - after some re-education for both genders.

Now, the question I’m posing today is why are there so few women in IT technology, especially in Asia? This is a question, very difficult to answer. Perhaps the root of all problems lie in education? Or is it culture?

A lot of young girls feel that to be a computer geek, you lose your sense of being lady-like. How untrue!! Did you know that the very first programmer was a lady named Ava Lovelace? She even had a programming language named after her. She also happened to be the wife and mother too.

In my family, my mother objected to me studying the sciences. I had a love for science ever since I picked up my first science book for kids aged 8-10. When I displayed an early affinity for math (age 4), she encouraged it as it was good for school. However, things changed when I entered high school. Suddenly, my parents started to speak to me about career, marriage and family. They said that I should not pick a “very hard course” because after all, I would end up being a housewife. This was the first time I discovered the Asian gender role dilemma.

Undeterred, I decided to pick up the sciences and eventually completed my degree in Computer Science. :) In fact, after that, my parents encouraged me to take up a Masters in Comp Sc. I declined since I wanted to challenge myself in the corporate world.

So, the first problem that girls face early in their life is that through education or environment factors, they are taught to be put off by science and anything “techie”. I did not start out that way. In fact, I was interested in learning how things work that I used to try to take things apart. I knew that someday, I’ll end up being an engineer or sorts. Of course, I had a HUGE dosage of MacGyver, which fueled my interest in science even more! BTW, I liked MacGyver for the scientific content… I did not think that Richard Dean Anderson was a hunk - unlike many of my friends. LOL!!! :D

As a girl grows up, she is exposed to many pressures in life, including peer pressure. Perhaps that is also another factor as to why girls suddenly drop their interest in science. Other girls taught to hate science are telling other girls to hate science too. To be smarter than a boy in math or science makes you a social pariah in school. This message is continued throughout their adolescence and even adult life!!

I can’t deny that I am also subject to such pressures too. At times, some woman would come up to me saying that I’m too “rough”. I could not help being “rough” as I had to deal with some MCPs at work and they only answered to authority when you were “like the boys”.

I am currently at the stage in my career where I’ve been asked to fill in some leadership positions. Although I do have some “mentors” like Jack Welch and Peter Drucker who are management leadership gurus, I can’t help to think that these are male mentors. I need to search out some female mentors around too. Why? Well, who best to tell you about the ups and downs of being in an mostly-male management team? Women who have been there themselves.

This also got me thinking of another issue as to find out why so few women are in management positions in Asia. I’m not talking about US or Europe as that is not where I am at currently. This is another question I will look into for another time. :)

Now, being in a leadership position, I feel that it is about time I gave back to my fellow females some tips and pointers as how to “survive” in the male-dominated IT world. It may not be easy at times but you have to be persistent and consistent.

  1. Leave your emotions at the door. - This is because any sign of emotions will cloud our judgment to see issues for what they are.
  2. Be decisive. - Give a firm decision and stick by it. Again, look at tip #1. When you start getting emotions in, that’s when we fail to make a firm decision and may look wishy-washy to others.
  3. Be brave. - There will be times when we are asked to do difficult tasks. Look at it this way, women has a higher threshold of pain than men. Heck! We can give birth and still walk after all that pain!
  4. Speak Up. - Ever seen how guys size up to each other. In order to not get lost in the crowd, learn to speak a bit “louder”, i.e. more assertive. I have a friend with a very loud voice. At times, even at her normal range, she sounds like she is commanding an army. ;)
  5. Learn to ask for help. - There are times when we feel overwhelmed with something, there is no shame in asking for help. If someone thinks that this is a sign of weakness, it is a sign that they have a closed mind.
  6. Learn to share. - We are not living on an island. Yes, its a competitive world, but you have nothing to lose if you learn to share information with one another. Some females tend to be territorial and hence, does not want to share information with one another.
  7. Learn to laugh. - There will be times that we’ll face an MCP who will make snide remarks. As much as we would like to see him pay for that snide remark, no amount of punishment will suffice for they will never learn. If possible, make a sarcastic remark about him to remind him that he has a mother… or does he?
  8. Sharpen that “saw”. - Constantly seek new challenges or study new things. Idleness is the rot of intelligence and it would be ashamed to easily declare that we no longer need to read because we’re mothers/wives/etc… Frankly, a high number of females will not read anything other than those large glossy magazines with how-to articles. Pick up an intellectual book once in a while.
  9. Don’t give up. - Good words to live by. ;)
  10. Celebrate you. - Words from Oprah Winfrey rings true. Remember that you are unique and you’re a person although you are a career-woman/girlfriend/wife/mother/grandmother…

This has been a very very long article. I happen to be one of the few women in IT and would like to hear your opinions, and experiences too. Perhaps, I may be wrong about the number of women in technology. We are part of the 50% of the workforce who contribute to using/creating technology everyday. We have graduated from being clerical/secretarial staff who know how to type a few letters/reports to actual engineers who design the very software which does this. So, it is a time to be proud of being one of the few women in technology.

After reading Carly Fiorina's book I saw some similarities when it comes to dealing with males in any industry. There will always be discrimination of sorts anywhere you go; we just have to buck up and face it!

If you don't know who Carly Fiorina is, she was once a CEO of a top Fortune 20 company some years back.

December 19, 2008

This Factory Makes Donuts

Donuts... Mmmmmmm...

My parents recently went to S'pore to attend a wedding of their friend's daughter and during that time, they caught up with our close family friends.

On the day they went back, our family friend recommended donuts from this place --> Donut Factory. Apparently, the donuts are fantastic.

Yummy Assortment of Donuts

At first, the donuts looked like the kinds sold by Big Apple & Co. or J.Co but once you sink your teeth into one of these "bad boys", you'll be hooked.

I thought the taste would be similar to J.Co's but I was wrong. So wrong.

These donuts taste FANTASTIC!!!!!

My parents, who are not big donut fans found these donuts to be fluffier and less oily than what Big Apple & Co or J.Co has to offer. The tangy aftertaste of the flour can't be found here and the texture of the donut seems more dense but not as dense as Dunkin' Donuts. They are quite generous with the filling too.

The instructions on the box tells people to reheat the donuts for 6 seconds in order to enjoy a nicely warmed donut. Of course, if you have put the donuts in the fridge, you'll need to thaw the donut to room temperature before reheating it.

*Sigh*... I feel so guilty after eating a donut. I need to exercise.

December 17, 2008

Talking Wood

===Take note, this post has nothing to do with anything obscene===

In Cantonese, wood (木) is pronounced as "muk", which if applied as an adjective, it means that you do not show much expression and is quite steady, like a tree, standing in a forest.

Anyway, EV and I had a conversation not too long ago...

EV: I want to watch movie.
Me: Yeah, I know.

EV: I want to watch Keanu Reeves.
Me: You want to watch that "muk"? Hahaha...

EV: Yeah, I like to watch "muk".
Me: You do realize that he's a "muk".

EV: Yes, but he's a good "muk".
Me: What makes you think he's a good "muk". He really acts like a "muk"-la. No expression. Really like a piece of wood.

EV: Yeah, but its not easy to play a "muk".
Me: You sure not easy meh?? He just need to stand there, like a "muk".

EV: Yes, it's not easy. That's why people pay him to play the "muk".
Me: ??????

Kekekekee... Anyone watched "The Day The Earth Stood Still" yet? 

December 15, 2008

Dear Santa...

Yeah... Yeah.. Christmas is around the corner - I GET IT!! 

I've been procrastinating my Christmas shopping as I got distracted by the lovely Christmas decorations at all the malls. LOL!!!

Gosh, I still need to shop for the Secret Santa event in my office and the dinner is this week! Alamak! Really cannot procastinate any longer!!!!

Anyway, going through my Flickr page I discovered that one of the shopping centres has put up a mailbox for Santa Claus. Now, we don't have a very active "Dear Santa" tradition here in Malaysia but since Bangsar is an area where a lot of expatriates shop; I'd guess this was quite relevant. :-)

If you could write to Santa, what would you ask him for?

December 14, 2008

Christmas Walkabout @ Pavilion, KL

This post is a bit delayed as I have been quite busy last week. (^ ^)

Anyway, my Christmas "Walkabout" this year took me to Pavilion, Kuala Lumpur. Well, I wouldn't go to Pavilion on any day although it is within walking range from my office as I don't have the luxury of taking long lunches.


But, since I wanted to watch Bolt in 3D and I've heard so much about GSC Cinemas there; I thought to watch it there. Well, Bolt was a pretty heart-warming movie although it wasn't as funny as I expected it to be. It reminded me about the bond between animals and humans; more importantly it reminded me about my dogs. Sure, Snoopy and Rusty drive me crazy at times but they love us unconditionally and are loyal to the very end.

It was raining the entire day and so, I couldn't take a picture of Pavilion's Christmas tree. The decoration in the main concourse area were hung giant Christmas chandeliers which looked like baubles without the tree.


The merchants set up a Christmas sale at the main concourse but I couldn't find what I was looking for, i.e. a Christmas star or angel to put on my family tree at home. Nevertheless, there were lots to see.


Parkson Grand also did put up beautiful trees too, some of which costs around RM3,000 and above (wow!!), i.e. tree with trimmings and all. Very exquisite but I prefer to have the family tree decorated with trimmings which are as old as I am. :-)

With all the walking around, EV and I decided to have a little snack. Since it had been raining the entire day and we were both feeling cold, we felt that having some chocolate at Theobroma Chocolate Lounge would be perfect.

IMG_0788_ IMG_0793_

We shared some strawberries with melted milk chocolate. The sweetness of the strawberries complemented the milk chocolate. If we had it with dark chocolate, the dark chocolate would have overpowered the natural freshness of the strawberries. Yum! Absolutely!

Although I was supposed to do some Christmas shopping, it turned out to be a day of walking and just taking photos. Gosh! I have but 11 days left!!!

December 09, 2008

Steamboat With Friends

I didn't do quite much this weekend except to hang out with my Mom and friends.

I had an errand to run which was to get some presents for our close family friends' kids. So, that involved me shopping mall hopping for the last few days. Well, the best part is that I managed to get the presents bought AND wrapped at one go. *Phew!!* - I'm kind of hopeless in the gift-wrapping department.

It had been quite cool at night with all the heavy rainstorms lately and so, EV was in the mood to have some steamboat. Basically, its a hot pot where we cook food slowly in some broth.

When the soup is ready, we just put in the ingredients to cook. The ingredients include seafood, some meat, vegetables and often at the end, when the soup is well infused with yummy goodness, we add in some noodles or eggs. It's quite a healthy way to eat provided you take lots of vegetables and lean meat. (^^)

The set we got was quite basic. Some seafood of prawns, clams and bamboo clams along with plenty of fish balls and tofu. It was not great but there are better steamboat places than the one we went to. 

After such a heavy meal, we all took a walk around Bangsar (yes, that's where we were) to help our friend hunt for some Christmas goodies. She was on an errand to look for some Christmas dessert. There are certainly a few cafes and bistros around this area but most of the goodies were beyond her budget.

We finally settled for a traditional Yule Log from Theobrama Chocolate Lounge, where EV and I tried out previously. We tried out their Chocolate Almond Cake which was just rich with dark chocolate with very little cake. Perfect for those serious chocolate afficionados. 

Yes, the cake is awfully small to be shared by 4 people but since we're watching our waistlines, it was a wise choice. :-)

Before that, we walked around Bangsare Village II and saw this HUGE decoration in the middle of the mall!!!

This Christmas tree @ Bangsar Village II is pretty awesome. Instead of putting up some fancy "fake" tree like other shopping outlets, BVII has taken a "green" approach. If you look closely at the tree, you will see what I mean...

The tree is made up of recycled PET bottles! Now, that just makes a lot of sense. Recycled goods can make beautiful decorations too! I marvel at the people who took the time to put up the decorations for this. 

Anyway, more beautiful photos of other shopping complexes to come up next! However, personally, the deco at Bangsar Village II will be my favourite this year. ;-)

December 06, 2008

Early Christmas Present

First of all, my hearts and prayers go out to the people and their families who were affected by this morning's landslide at Bukit Antarabangsa. May God watch over you during this hour of need. It just amazes me that 15 years on, we have not learnt our lesson about hillside development.

Anyway, on a slightly happier note; I got my AIPO Dry Cabinet this morning! Yippee!!!

Don't worry, the box will be recycled. Should Rusty be naughty, he will be shipped off to Obedience School! :-P

I had my eye on this cabinet ever since I got my camera in October. After some enquiries and research, I decided that I would get this cabinet. I was thinking of using a Lock-n-Lock box with some Thirsty Hippo and silica gel to store my camera. However, being the lazybum that I am, I know that I will forget to change the Thirsty Hippo and silica gel after a few months. **sheepish grin**

I was very lucky to have chatted with my friend online about this cabinet a few days back and found out that he was going to buy some cabinets in bulk with his other friends. He convinced me that the 48 litre was quite a worthwhile buy even though I don't have much gears to store for now. So, I managed to get my box with some discount!! \(^.^)/

The cabinet comes with a small LCD window which will indicate the humidity and temperature of the air within the box. Yes, the dry box does come with a power cord. It is also important to note that the box needs to sit in a well ventilated room too.

It sure looks small and cute...

After I got the package, I noticed that the cabinet is not very large. From the picture above, you can tell that the box is about 1 sq ft in width. Besides my gears, I can also store my other important documents such as my certificates too. 

If you want more information about this, do check it out at

Yeah, I know it's a bit extravagant to get myself an early Christmas present but this will be a gift which will last a looong time.

Christmas @ Work

Christmas is clearly underway now. Even though the economic situation seems quite dreary, but we do all we can to give ourselves some hope.

My office has started to put up some decorations for the upcoming Christmas party. It will be a fun time with some dinner and "Secret Santa". (^ ^)


This is a new Christmas tree which we put up this year. For many years, the office has been putting up a very small tree where we have to place a large box so that it looks better. So, after talking to management, management has decided to fork out some money to get the tree and new decorations. Yay!

I wished that the candy cane was real... ;-)

Even the shopping centres are outdoing each other this year with the Christmas decorations. This year, Suria KLCC has done away with the typical purple decorations and had decorated the tree with ornaments related to Christmas and the winter wonderland.

As for the attraction, Suria KLCC has scheduled performances of Christmas carols by different musical performers. For tonight, a string quartet performed in front of an audience. A string quartet consists of performers using four instruments - 2 violins, 1 viola and 1 cello.


I did not stick around for long as I had to go home. I do hope to capture more Christmas decorations at the other shopping centers. If you do have time, do try to stick around to see some performances as it will be worth your while. 

That reminds me, I will need to get the home ready for Christmas too!

December 03, 2008

Getting In The Mood - Last Christmas

Are you looking forward to Christmas yet?

My family has not yet figured out what to do as some relatives will not be around during this Christmas as they will be flying off to Perth. Thank you Air Asia, now everyone can fly. ;-)

I've been compiling my Christmas song list and realized that my favourite song "Last Christmas" from the Beatles was not there. Oh well, got to add that song somehow.

Anyway, I got this flash from a friend some years back of the song I liked. Someone posted it up on YouTube.. Yay! Have a look, the flash animation is just great...

Well... Last Christmas, my family hosted the family get-together and it was the first time my family invited the in-laws for dinner. We got to celebrate my cousin's birthday too. We had a fun time singing carols and also karaoke.

Christmas is about 22 days away. Yeah, time to get crackin'!

December 02, 2008

Dear YozoraNiteSky

I got tagged by YozoraNiteSky... It's been a while since I've done a MEME. So, here it goes... My letter will be addressed to YozoraNiteSky since she was the last person to put in her comment.

BTW, if there were frogs in my garden, Snoopy or Rusty will kill it. Evidence of such an act is here.

Do the “Letter MEME”. Tag no less than 5 other people, and leave them a comment, informing them that they have been tagged. Then copy the “How-to” Letter Meme, and finish your Journal entry.

-> How you do the Letter Meme:

Dear ________(the last person who left a comment on your blog/journal):

I don’t really know how to tell you this, but ___1___. I think I realized it ___2___ ___3___ and I saw you ___4___ ___5___. I’m sure you’re ___6___ enough to understand ___7___. I’m returning ___8___ to you, but I’ll keep ___9___ as a memory. You should also know that I ___10___ ___11___ .

-Your name-

Basically just fill in the blanks on top based on the answers you are gonna choose below. ( I will put my result at the bottom of this entry =) )

1. What’s the color of your shirt?
Blue - Our romance is over
Red - Our affair is over
White - I’ll join the monastery
Black - I dislike you
Green - Our horoscope doesn’t match
Grey - You’re a pervert
Yellow - I’m selling myself
Pink - Your nostrils are insulting
Brown - The mafia wants you
No shirt - You’re a loser
Other - I’m in love with your sister

2. Which is your birth month?
January - That night
February - Last year
March - When your dwarf bit me
April - When I tripped on sesame seeds
May - First of May
June - When you put cuffs on me
July - When I threw up
August - When I saw the shrunken head
September - When we skinny dipped
October - When I quoted Santa
November - When your dog ran amok
December - When I changed tennis shoes

3. Which food do you prefer?
Tacos - In your apartment
Pizza - In your camping car
Pasta - Outside of Chicago
Hamburgers - Under the bus
Salad - As you ate enchilada
Chicken - In your closet
Kebab - With Paris Hilton
Fish - In women’s clothing
Sandwiches - At the Hare Krishna graduation
Lasagna - At the mental hospital
Hot dog - Under a state of trance
None of the above - With George Bush and his wife

4. What’s the color of your socks?
Yellow - Hit on
Red - Insult
Black - Ignore
Blue - Knock out
Purple - Pour syrup on
White - Carve your initials into
Grey - Pull the clothes off
Brown - Put leeches on
Orange - Castrate
Pink - Pull the toupee off
Barefoot - Sit on
Other - Drive out

5. What’s the color of your underwear?
Black - My best friend
White - My father
Grey - Bill Clinton
Brown - My fart balloon
Purple - My mustard soufflé
Red - Donald Duck
Blue - My avocado plant
Yellow - My penpal in Ghana
Orange - My Kid Rock-collection
Pink - Manchester United’s goalkeeper
None - My John F. Kennedy-statue
Other - The crazy monk

6. What do you prefer to watch on TV?
Scrubs - Man
O.C. - Emotional
One Tree Hill - Open
Heroes - Frostbitten
Lost - High
House - Scared
Simpsons - Cowardly
The news - Mongolic
Idol - Masochistic
Family Guy - Senile
Top Model - Middle-class
None of the above - Ashamed

7. Your mood right now?
Happy - How awful I’ve felt
Sad - How boring you are
Bored - That Santa doesn’t exist
Angry - That your pimples are at the last stage
Depressed - That we’re cousins
Excited - That there is no solution to this.
Nervous - The middle-east
Worried - That your Honda sucks
Apathetic - That I did a sex-change
Ashamed - That I’m allergic to your hamster
Cuddly - That I get turned on by garbage men
Overjoyous - That I’m open
Other - That Extreme Home Makeover sucks

8. What’s the color of your walls in your bedroom?
White - Your ring
Yellow - Your love letters
Red - Your Darth Vader-poster
Black - Your tame stone
Blue - The couch cushions
Green - The pictures from LA
Orange - Your false teeth
Brown - Your contact book
Grey - Our matching snoopy-bibs
Purple - Your old lottery coupons
Pink - How awful I’ve felt
Other - Your memories from the military service

9. The first letter of your first name?
A/B - Your photo
C/D - The oil stocks
E/F - Your neighbour Martin
G/H - My virginity
I/J - The results of your blood-sample
K/L - Your left ear
M/N - Your suicide note
O/P - My common sense
Q/R - Your mom
S/T - Your collection of butterflies
U/V - Your criminal record
W/X - David’s tricot outfits
Y/Z - Your grades from college

10. The last letter in your last name?
A/B -
C/D - Never will forget
E/F - Always wanted to break
G/H - Never openly mocked
I/J - Always have felt dirty before
K/L - Will tell the authorities about
M/N - Told in my confession today about
O/P - Was interviewed by the Times about
Q/R - Told my psychiatrist about
S/T - Get sick when I think of
U/V - Always will try to forget
W/X - Am better off without
Y/Z - Never liked

11. What do you prefer to drink?
Water- Our friendship
Beer - Senility
Soft drink - A new life as a clone
Soda - The incarnation as an eskimo
Milk - The apartment building
Wine - Cocaine abuse
Cider - A passionate interest for mice
Juice - Oprah Winfrey imitations
Mineral water - Embarrassing rash
Hot chocolate - Eggplant-fetishism
Whisky - To ruin the second world war
Other - To hate the Boston Celtics

12. To which country would you prefer to go on a vacation?
Thailand - Warm regards
USA - Best regards
England - Good luck on your short-term leave from jail
Spain - Go and drown yourself
China - Disgusting regards
Germany - With ease
Japan - Go burn
Greece - Your everlasting enemy
Australia - Greetings to your frog Leonard
Egypt - Fuck off now
France - In pain
So, here's my letter...

Dear YozoraNiteSky, (the last person who left a comment on your blog/journal):

I don’t really know how to tell you this, but your nostrils are insulting. I think I realized it when I threw up at the Hare Krishna graduation and I saw you ignore Manchester United’s goalkeeper. I’m sure you’re man enough to understand that Santa doesn’t exist. I’m returning your memories from the military service to you, but I’ll keep your photo as a memory. You should also know that I get sick when I think of embarrassing rash .

Greetings to your frog Leonard,
LOL!! This is a twist to the "Dear John/Jane" letters. Kekeke.. (",)

So, my next list of victims friends are:

December 01, 2008

Did I Just Lose Another 2 Kg??

Snoopy looks a bit surprised... So am I...

This is rather shocking.. I just weighed myself and found out that I've lost about 2kg!!

Well, I didn't check my weight last week but I'd guess I was surprised that I dropped by 2kg this week, despite not going to the gym. 

I've been quite strict with myself - no coffee or Milo at work. If I did take Milo, it was only one cup that week. Other than that, it has been nothing but green tea, hot water or natural fruit juices. 

As for lunch, it is often a challenge to eat healthily. Most foods have a lot of salt, sugar or oils and to make the right choice is hard. If all your colleagues prefer to go to this chap fan (economy rice) where the foods are tasty but has a lot salt and oil, your choices are kind of limited. Of course, the best option is to pack your own food - that way, you control what you eat. But often, do we have the time or are we disciplined enough to prepare our food daily? 

Besides that, no supper or any kind after 9:30pm. I have my dinners quite late due to work, but when I do have it, my portions are smaller and often have a lot of leafy green vegetables in it. I move around quite a bit after dinner and will go to bed 4-hours later. It's not good to sleep with a full stomach.

Perhaps my "recent" weight loss was that I managed to clean my bowels completely this morning? (^.^)

Anyway, this small win is a cause for celebration... BY GOING TO THE GYM TOMORROW!!! 

With Christmas coming and the temptation to indulge in all foods very difficult to fend off; this season will be a testing one... So, stay strong! Stay fit! Choose the right foods! Be motivated to stay fit!!!!

Tapped Dry...

I'm really tapped out of ideas.

Not sure why my blog is really in a rut lately. I seem to be losing subscribers as seen in my Feedburner.. eep!!

I want to rant about stuff but can't seem to find the energy for it.

EV will say that I'm suffering from Mondayitis. It could be a bit true. Even watching some funny football antics at I'm On Setanta Sports did not help much.

Perhaps I need a nap.

Perhaps I need to binge on a bag of chips (uggghh), but after watching a 5-hour marathon of Dr Oz on Oprah on the Hallmark channel yesterday, I am compelled to eat more fruits, vegetables and do more exercise to get into shape. Note that when Dr Oz pulled out the "omentum" of a fat/obese person, I got really scared... and disgusted!!

OK OK... Maybe I need to spend some quality time at the gym. After all, I have missed my sessions for the past couple of weeks due to being sick.

I wanted to go shopping for Christmas stuff this weekend but traffic around the malls is just horrendous. And, we're supposed to be in recession, no?

Or, perhaps I can start thinking about some lens for my new camera? **Hint - Christmas pressie**

Oh well, at least a holiday is coming up next Monday. (^.^)

November 30, 2008

Thursday Night Dinner

Mom decided to prepare a simple dinner of 'Fish and Chips' minus the chips last Thursday night.

Mom had some prepared frozen fish bought from the store since she had to go out that day. So, with some cabbage, carrots, onions and potatoes, my mom prepared a coleslaw and baked potato.

Home-made coleslaw with cabbage, carrots and onions

The coleslaw is pretty simple. You do not need a lot of mayonnaise, just about 1 tablespoon for a large amount of cabbage. Half a lemon is squeezed to add some 'twang' to the slaw. Simple!!

My mom did not deep fry the fish as it already has been deep-fried before the fish was frozen. So, with a bit of olive oil, my mom pan-fried the fish just to heat it up.

Pan-fried Fish

As for the potatoes, it was boiled and mashed before we added a bit of butter and olive oil to the mash. Then, for something different, my mom decided to add a bit of cheese and baked it in the oven for 15 minutes. My mom didn't like us taking a lot of potatoes, so, she just boiled 3 medium-sized potatoes.

Small dish of Baked Potato

It was a balanced meal where we had some coleslaw leftover for sandwiches the next day... :-) We had some home-made bread too but my Dad had cut up the bread before I could take a picture of it.

Sometimes, it is just good to have simple food at home.

November 28, 2008

How's Your Christmas Preparations?

Traditionally, the Christmas season for me and my family begins the 1st week of Advent.

This year, my family doesn't seem to have any big plans except for a couple of things...

1. Rusty's Neuter Operation (ugghh)
2. Rusty and Dad's B'day a few days before Christmas (yeah, they share the same b'day)

My eldest cousin is very lucky to share the same b'day as our Lord, Jesus Christ. And because of that, he's always felt a very deep and special connection with our Lord.

Snoopy finds it hard to get into the Christmas Mood...

I know I have a tonne of things to do during the Christmas season. It's not the parties with family and friends but also to do some works for those who need it more than ever. Gosh, I got to talk to my Dad about that too.

I think I may have harped on this many times that Christmas should not be the one time of year to do all the good works we need to do, but it should be done all year round.

Anyway, with the impending recession and bad times ahead; I find it hard to get into that Christmas mood. More so, after this morning's meeting at work where the bosses harped over small issues. *sigh*.. It's not a good sign when that happens as it pisses off the employees which just speeds up their exodus from the company.

November 25, 2008

Two Years Ago...

Two years ago, I took this picture...


I happened to have taken a trip to Edinburgh, Scotland with some colleagues while I was working in Derby, UK at that time. It was a very very long journey but worthwhile. Edinburgh has that mix of medieval charm with metropolitan flair.

It is also a university city and reminded me of Melbourne, Australia very much.

Anyway, this is my first attempt at "tilt-and-shift", which is a cool way to miniaturize your subjects. ;-)

Come to think of it, I never did get to Part 2 of the post. LOL!!!

Funnily though, tonight's post is exactly two years from that trip.

November 24, 2008

Cake Obsession

I would have to admit. I have a slight cake obsession. 
The reason why I say, "slight" is that I do not normally idulge in cakes everyday or every week.
However, EV has a very very passionate cake obsession.

EV: I'm hungry
Me: You're always hungry.
EV: Let's have tea.
Me: It's almost dinner time, if you eat now, you won't be able to eat dinner.
EV: I don't care... I need CAKE... DELICIOUS!!!

EV and I are pretty ardent fans of Delicious. Sure, some folks think the food is so-so but I kind of like their menu, especially some of their salads. 

EV: I want to have chocolate and carrot cake.
Me: Wait ...wait.. You're suggesting that we eat TWO cakes???
EV: Yeah, why not?
Me: I can't finish two cakes let alone one. My stomach can't take it.
EV: Wah... Your stomach shrank. Good for you! More for me! 

She tries to convince me that carrot cake is "healthy", except for the cheese topping. Yeah, but she forgets the amount of butter and sugar which goes into the cake as well.. 


Moments later...

EV: Oh no... I can't finish it!!
Me: See, I told you so...

In the end, she ta-paoed the leftover cake. 

Now, EV is not that unhealthy. She only had stir-fried vegetables and some fried loh see fun for lunch. However, when it comes to her sweet tooth, she can't help but succumb to these yummy things...

Of course we finished the chocolate cake first... (^.^)

November 20, 2008

Sentimental Thursday - Lucky

I really really like this song. Brings back a lot of sweet memories. :-P

Here's the lyrics, if you're not interested in the song.

Do you hear me,
I'm talking to you
Across the water across the deep blue ocean
Under the open sky oh my, baby I'm trying
Boy I hear you in my dreams
I feel your whisper across the sea
I keep you with me in my heart
You make it easier when life gets hard

I'm lucky I'm in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again

They don't know how long it takes
Waiting for a love like this
Every time we say goodbye
I wish we had one more kiss
I'll wait for you I promise you, I will

I'm lucky I'm in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
I'm lucky we're in love in every way
Lucky to have stayed where we have stayed
Lucky to be coming home someday

And so I'm sailing through the sea
To an island where we'll meet
You'll hear the music, feel the air
I'll put a flower in your hair
Though the breezes through trees
Move so pretty you're all I see
As the world keeps spinning round
You hold me right here right now

I'm lucky I'm in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
I'm lucky we're in love in every way
Lucky to have stayed where we have stayed
Lucky to be coming home someday

Ooohh ooooh oooh oooh ooh ooh ooh ooh
Ooooh ooooh oooh oooh ooh ooh ooh ooh

I do agree with the song, it is very lucky to find a best friend to be in love with. Someone who knows how to make your life easier when it is hard.

These days, with crisis here and there, little pieces of such joy should be held very dear to us.

Not to fear... Friday is ALMOST here!!

November 18, 2008

We Saw This Coming... Didn't We?

Rusty sure looks worried - I would be too if I see the cost of my kibbles and treats are going up...

CNN seems to be using this word very often these days - the dreaded "R" word which folks in the financial world have been trying to avoid for some months now.

Well, the world's 2nd largest economy has shrunk again in results for another quarter, and that means, it's technically in RECESSION.

We all knew that the big "boom" period would not last forever. What goes up, must eventually come down.

However, judging from the BIG crowd at the shopping malls, I don't think the Recession reality has hit our local Malaysian consumers. Sure, they noticed that price of goods are going up despite price of petrol going down. But, do they understand why?

I've explained to a colleague last night that the price of food is not just dependent on petrol alone. Many other factors are also included such as the price of animal feed which uses grains such as corn, has been scarce due to an increase of production for bio-fuel usage as well as environmental factors such as drought or global warming effects which has affected crops. Indirectly, these factors has attributed to the price of food.

Of late, I've also noticed that a lot of companies in whichever sector has been pushing hard to close deals/sales, initiated committed projects with clients and tried to forecast the future; in anticipation of getting enough monies to "ride this storm out".

It's the same with my company as well where the boss has been EXTRA PUSHY to get us to close deals with clients who are already quite hesitant to commit to anything. I'm very afraid that with TOO MUCH "CLIENT BULLYING", we just might lose the client. It's good to be persistent but not to the point of irritating the client.

Anyway, have you started to cut back spending or are you still oblivious to the economic turmoil around us?
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